An Open Letter To An ex-Conservative Member of Parliament

Dear Sam Gyimah,

When I learnt you had defected to the Liberal Democrats, I fell to the floor and cried like a baby because our Great Party had lost a gem. I am sorry to hear that you were treated as “An outcast in the Conservative Party.” While I appreciate the importance of not playing the victim, it is good you spoke out.

I felt your pain when you said, “I’ve been involved in the Conservative party for two decades. I’ve fought for the party. I have an unusual background — I’m not your typical Tory recruit.” The Conservative Party for the want of a better word is a white party and we are the exceptions. Like you, I am a dark-skinned black man; like you, I am of West African heritage; like you, I am married to a white woman; like you, I studied philosophy, politics and economics (PPE) at Oxford; like you, I worked for Goldman Sachs; like you, I love Arsenal and like you, I have “Spent a long time evangelising about why people should look at the Conservative party seriously.”

I have been evangelising to my black brothers and sisters on the need to ditch the welfare party and join the party of aspiration. I also tell them to pick themselves by their bootstrap and stop blaming others for their woes. Despite our efforts, we are still not good enough for the Conservatives. Our party needs to realise that token figures like us are useful as we do a great job not only in pontificating to our people that if they work hard they can be like us but also in selling our party’s bitter medicine to ethnic minorities.

It must be frustrating for you to go to Oxford University, study the course of Prime Ministers i.e. PPE, serve as the President of the Oxford Union and work in the premier investment bank only to be given crumbs. For all your qualifications why should you be rewarded with junior ministerial portfolios like childcare, prisons and universities? Look at Uncle Kwasi Kwarteng? What did he get for his Eton, Cambridge and Harvard qualifications? A mere minister of state portfolio.

Kwasi Kwarteng

Meanwhile, the likes of Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and Jacob Rees-Mogg who went to the same schools like us and studied the same course as us are holding the levers of power. Unfortunately, because we are black Tories, we have to set good examples by not playing the victim or race card.

Gove, Johnson, Rees-Mogg

I know it is hard being a Conservative member especially when most of your interactions are with blacks, however, you must develop a thick skin. I presume you must have found it awkward justifying the Conservatives austerity programme to your poor cousins and sick aunties. I got away with it by developing a coping mechanism. Whenever I am with my black brethren, I become race fluid and colourblind. In that way, I can easily tell my sister who is facing deportation that the government’s hostile immigration policy is okay. As long as I am doing fine, I don’t give a damn about the hundreds of thousands of black folks living in the doghouse. My message to our people is simple — “Fix your home countries and you wouldn’t need to come here to seek greener pastures.” A friend of mine who is a black card-carrying Tory has a more radical approach. To numb herself from the pains of the less fortunate blacks, she underwent empathy draining surgery whereby every ounce of empathy in her blood was sucked out. I admire her ruthlessness.

I know you are fed up being treated as a second-class citizen by our party, but I plead with you to reconsider your decision. You are of more use to us than hanging out with any other party. Why be a black patch on a blackboard when you can be a black speck on a whiteboard? Don’t throw away this opportunity. Both of us are a select breed of people that have a symbiotic relationship with the Tories — We get to have a seat on the floor eating the remnants while the party gets to fill its token quota. I don’t need to remind you about what Uncle James wrote a couple of months ago, “Ethnic minority cabinet members demonstrate to young people there is nothing holding them back.”

If you leave, we will find it difficult to whitewash our image as the nasty party to the sceptical ethnic minorities.

Long live the Conservative Party.

Long may Boris Johnson reign

Selah.

Uncle Alatenumo

September 2019

Cc

Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Jo Swinson

Conservative Party

Liberal Democrats

Chuma Umunna

Kemi Badenoch

James Clevery

Adam Afriye

Kwasi Kwarteng

Writer and social critic